40 passengers injured after Amtrak train hits tractor-trailer truck in North Carolina

HALIFAX, N.C. (KABC) -- An Amtrak passenger train collided with a tractor-trailer on the tracks in Halifax, North Carolina on Monday, injuring 40 passengers.

Pictures from our sister station WTVD showed the train's engine on its side and the luggage car off at an angle to the tracks. A passenger car behind the luggage car also derailed, but remained upright.

DOT officials said 25 people were taken to Halifax Memorial Hospital by bus and 15 by ambulance after the collision, which happened about noon Monday. None of the injuries appeared to be life-threatening.

PHOTOS: Amtrak train crash in North Carolina

"We are relieved that there are no fatalities reported at this time, and our thoughts and prayers are with those who were injured," said NC Transportation Secretary Tony Tata.

Amtrak officials said there were 212 passengers and eight crew members on board the train.

The cab of the truck was intact, but the low-boy trailer carrying a large electrical unit covered in a large blue tarp was obliterated by the force of the impact. The extra-long truck had a special permit to operate and was being escorted by the NC Highway Patrol as required.

A woman who witnessed the crash said the driver was lingering on the tracks because he was trying to make a difficult right-hand turn on the other side.

Leslie Cipriani of Roanoke Rapids said the tractor-trailer backed up several times Monday as the driver tried to make the turn.

A few minutes later, she said she heard the sound of the oncoming train and saw the cross bars hit the tractor-trailer. The driver then jumped out of the truck.

Cipriani shot video of the impact with her phone.

The train - the #80 Carolinian - was headed north from Raleigh with an eventual destination of New York with stops in major cities.

Unhurt passengers were being taken by bus to Richmond to continue their journeys.

The cause of the crash was under investigation.

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